Coffee is an everyday component of people’s lives, for this reason the coffee industry in the UK and around the world is working hard to deal with the deepening impacts we are all experiencing from COVID-19.
Whilst coffee shops and cafés have temporarily closed to support social distancing measures, our members are striving to ensure that product ranges within the retail sector remain available. We are all wholeheartedly supporting vulnerable groups, the NHS, frontline doctors, nurses and carers, and other key workers who are giving their all to protect the UK population.
The UK coffee industry is supporting in every way it can.
As a coffee industry we were also concerned to understand whether we could continue to supply coffee products safely. We were pleased to note that the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has found no evidence to suggest that food or drink is a transmission source for COVID-19.
EFSA Chief Scientist Marta Hugas, said “Experiences from previous outbreaks of related coronaviruses, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV) and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), show that transmission through food consumption did not occur. At the moment, there is no evidence to suggest that coronavirus is any different in this respect.” The EFSA statement is available in full, here. The BCA will continue to assess the published scientific advice and opinion. In the meantime please continue to follow general food safety advice; washing hands thoroughly and cleaning surfaces regularly after use.
COVID-19 impacts are also deepening across many origin countries for coffee, which is having an impact across supply chains. A clear overview of the types of impacts beig felt in different countries and their status, can be found through Sucafina's work, here. This platform will help keep you updated on the coffee supply chain risks and logistics.
The Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) also provides resources on COVID-19 and its impact, including recent webinars covering the topic: https://sca.coffee/covid19
Please keep checking back for further updates.
In the meantime, stay safe and continue to look out for each other.